Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner

1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Would someone be able to list down steps on things to be prepared for driving to Qatar from Dubai? (married couples driving)

What I understand is:

Paperwork
i) We need to apply a transit visa from Saudi embassy?
-> this requires original passports, 2 photos with white background, vehicle ownership documents, insurance documents. Is this it?
ii) We belong to countries receiving visa-on-arrival at Qatar

Others
ii) Females have to be covered up when travelling through Saudi
iii) Females will not be driving the vehicle through Saudi

Any additional advice and tips apart from using flydubai? It's gonna be a roadtrip ;)

Many thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,891 Posts
1) Hire someone.

2) Fly to Dubai.

or

1) Make friends with a Saudi family and go with them, sorting visas prior to traveling.

In all seriousness, is there a reason you are even trying this? Are any of you guys going arabic speakers? Better, anyone GCC citizens??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,665 Posts
I second Jynx comments, have someone speaking Arabic with you (if possible). You never know what's out there and the language barrier just complicates. Also, you would need to check your insurance coverage guess you need buy insurance on the spot. Or go with someone who already 've done this.

Or grab a flight and hire a car there on the spot.

I sure can understand how adventurous and pretty exciting a road warrior exercise can be but the risks might outweigh the benefits ? This is not Canada - ON to US FL drive lemme tell yua.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
423 Posts
Unless you know someone with serious wasta in Saudi, you wont get allowed to drive there.

Seriously.

Forget it, it'll never happen before sunderland win the premiership....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
There is no language barriers and as much as the saudis are behind they still speak English. If you get your transit visa sorted then you should be in Dubai in 6 hours tops!

That's 1 hour to salwa, 1 hour through Saudi and about 4 from there to Dubai

I don't know why people are making such a biggie about it. I do it once a month and it's just fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,891 Posts
It isnt impossible to do, Toon. I believe you have to go through a company to get your visa, and once approved is valid for 30 days. Getting the approval though, is the key. I only have had local/GCC friends who do/have done this. The visa i used to have, they said would of allowed me to have made the trip into KSA easily. My new visa is not as 'important' and my local friend says would be a lot harder to get a visa. Just would be a I dont know about if you dont own your car outright though if that is an issue but I think you have to purchase insurance in each of the other countries.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
There is no language barriers and as much as the saudis are behind they still speak English. If you get your transit visa sorted then you should be in Dubai in 6 hours tops!

That's 1 hour to salwa, 1 hour through Saudi and about 4 from there to Dubai

I don't know why people are making such a biggie about it. I do it once a month and it's just fine.
Hi noisyboy, we're driving from Dubai to Qatar. But have quite a few of friends coming in from Qatar to Dubai as well. I'll get started with the transit visa then at Saudi Embassy in Dubai, then.

How are the roads driving through Saudi - much better than driving through Industrial Area at Abu Hamour? (You know them potholes are preetty darn big and deep at some places!)

Many thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
Hi noisyboy, we're driving from Dubai to Qatar. But have quite a few of friends coming in from Qatar to Dubai as well. I'll get started with the transit visa then at Saudi Embassy in Dubai, then.

How are the roads driving through Saudi - much better than driving through Industrial Area at Abu Hamour? (You know them potholes are preetty darn big and deep at some places!)

Many thanks!

Ok so it will take you a little more than 4 hours to get to Guwaifat. A couple minutes later you will get to Batha (Saudi/UAE Borders). Make sure you don't get into the truck lane. Always keep on their left and watch for pedestrians. They will ask you to go inside the arrival halls because the boxes are USUALLY reserved for GCC Nationals. The whole process shouldn't take more than 5 minutes. They will also ask you to pay exit fees (which is so weird), total of 30 or 35 dirhams/resident.

Then very shortly after you will arrive at the other side of Batha (Saudi side). I am a Saudi resident but I am not sure how it wil be for you. The Saudi's are usually chill people. When you get to the part where they check the car please get out of the car and open the trunk or they might make a fuss out of it. Your wife doesn't have to unless they say that.

From there it will take you about 1 hour and 10 minutes to get to Salwa (Saudi/Qatar border). You will know that are you there when you hit a roundabout. Go right on the roundabout (follow signs to Salwa) and you are almost at Salwa.

In Salwa the customs ladies (usually chicks) are very nice and helpful). From Salwa to downtown Doha it shouldn't take you more than 45 minutes if you know where you are going.

The roads in Saudi are good enough, no pot holes except some as soon as you enter Saudi. Some construction going on there.

Your wife doesn't have to be covered up. Just make sure she wears a abaya on herself. No need to cover her hair.

Gas in Saudi is very cheap so please fill her up there. There is one station on your right as soon as you enter Saudi. AND there are some labor at that gas station who are ready to put fairy all over the front of your car to protect it from the moving sand on that drive. Don't pay more than 20 riyals and I recommend that you do it because if the road is bad, you will majorly F-up your headlights and front bumper. Last hint about Saudi, no radars :)

Anything else? Please ask!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ok so it will take you a little more than 4 hours to get to Guwaifat. A couple minutes later you will get to Batha (Saudi/UAE Borders). Make sure you don't get into the truck lane. Always keep on their left and watch for pedestrians. They will ask you to go inside the arrival halls because the boxes are USUALLY reserved for GCC Nationals. The whole process shouldn't take more than 5 minutes.
Got it.

They will also ask you to pay exit fees (which is so weird), total of 30 or 35 dirhams/resident.
What's weirder is not all UAE borders impose the exit fee.

Then very shortly after you will arrive at the other side of Batha (Saudi side). I am a Saudi resident but I am not sure how it wil be for you. The Saudi's are usually chill people. When you get to the part where they check the car please get out of the car and open the trunk or they might make a fuss out of it. Your wife doesn't have to unless they say that.

From there it will take you about 1 hour and 10 minutes to get to Salwa (Saudi/Qatar border). You will know that are you there when you hit a roundabout. Go right on the roundabout (follow signs to Salwa) and you are almost at Salwa.

In Salwa the customs ladies (usually chicks) are very nice and helpful). From Salwa to downtown Doha it shouldn't take you more than 45 minutes if you know where you are going.
We were living off Salwa road so that bit will be alright.

The roads in Saudi are good enough, no pot holes except some as soon as you enter Saudi. Some construction going on there.

Your wife doesn't have to be covered up. Just make sure she wears a abaya on herself. No need to cover her hair.
It *must* be an abaya - not even very loose fitting outfit?

Gas in Saudi is very cheap so please fill her up there. There is one station on your right as soon as you enter Saudi. AND there are some labor at that gas station who are ready to put fairy all over the front of your car to protect it from the moving sand on that drive. Don't pay more than 20 riyals and I recommend that you do it because if the road is bad, you will majorly F-up your headlights and front bumper. Last hint about Saudi, no radars :)
(i) What's fairy - the dishwashing liquid?
(ii) No radar - do drivers drive like hooligans on the road?
(iii) I remember reading there was a place to stop midway - would perhaps be packing snacks so food wise we'll be fine but what about toilet stops along the way? Or is it the case of the toilets are anywhere along the road :D

Anything else? Please ask!
Many, many thanks for the info to date! I'm the wife :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
noisyboy,

Is it the Silas border post on UAE side (on E11 highway, Abu Dhabi) that you would be referring to - as I can't see Guwaifat on maps.google.com?

Then, from E11 (UAE), we just continue on route 95 in Saudi.

And we *must* enter Qatar through Abu Samra on route 5 - but not the other route 59 (running through the middle of Qatar)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
So it's the wife doing the research as always :).

Silaa is the before last (Guwaifat being last) town before you exit the UAE. Yes it is on the E11.

Fairy is the dish washing detergent yes LOL.

In Saudi, if you're not doing 140 then don't be on the left lane. Some drive worse than hooligans.

Loose clothing is fine but don't color it up too much.

Salwa and Abu Samra are both Saudi/Qatar borders. It's just that Salwa is the Saudi side and Abu Samra is the Qatar side.

Forget route #'s as they are only confusing. When you enter Saudi just drive straight for an hour or a bit more until you hit a roundabout. Just take a right and you are almost in Salwa. There are no other roundabouts.

The only tricky part I found is when driving from the UAE to the Saudi border. Make sure you do not enter Abu Duabi by mistake. Keep following signs to Guwaifat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So it's the wife doing the research as always :).

Silaa is the before last (Guwaifat being last) town before you exit the UAE. Yes it is on the E11.

Fairy is the dish washing detergent yes LOL.

In Saudi, if you're not doing 140 then don't be on the left lane. Some drive worse than hooligans.

Loose clothing is fine but don't color it up too much.

Salwa and Abu Samra are both Saudi/Qatar borders. It's just that Salwa is the Saudi side and Abu Samra is the Qatar side.

Forget route #'s as they are only confusing. When you enter Saudi just drive straight for an hour or a bit more until you hit a roundabout. Just take a right and you are almost in Salwa. There are no other roundabouts.

The only tricky part I found is when driving from the UAE to the Saudi border. Make sure you do not enter Abu Duabi by mistake. Keep following signs to Guwaifat.
Right-o! Thank you for the tips so far!!!

Would driving across on Thursday afternoon be a terrible idea, then? Pushing off on early Friday morning better?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
Right-o! Thank you for the tips so far!!!

Would driving across on Thursday afternoon be a terrible idea, then? Pushing off on early Friday morning better?
I guess it wouldn't be such a bad idea. I don't think there would be much traffic. But bare in mind that there isnt much traffic on pretty much anyday (unless its a public holiday).

And there are no lights on the road in Saudi, so if you don't mind that hour drive with no light then go for the afternoon drive. If you are a morning person, then go for Friday morning.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top